KIM WINGEREI. The Naked President.

I try to refrain writing about Trump, he gets much more attention than he deserves! But the problem with Trump is not Donald Trump. The problem is not the people that elected him, nor the media that supports him. It is not the Republican party, or the support of the National Rifle Association, the Ku Klux Klan and the Koch brothers. Nor is his misogyny, disdain for truth and inability to express anything but simple – often incoherent – sound-bites or tweets what should give us the most concern. The really scary part is that nobody is standing up to him.

The endless derisions of Trump on social media and increasingly also in mainstream media, may appear as edifying proof that public opinion is against him. But the flip-side of modern media diversity is that most of us watch, read and listen in an echo chamber of our own opinions. Rest assured that there is another such room resonating with Trump supporters – and it is no antechamber.

Looking at Trump standing next to Putin at the Helsinki press conference reminds me of the old tale: Here is a man wearing the cloak of a President, a cloak made invisible by the absence of the substance required to wear it. Naked in his incompetence for everyone to see, yet those around to advise him pretend to see the cloth that isn’t there – exactly as in H C Andersen’s fable – The Emperor’s New Clothes.

But not just those that advise him, anyone who has anything to lose by opposing Trump is pretending they see the cloak. That Vladimir Putin – himself a cunning liar – manages to keep a straight face is no surprise – a naked President is what he wanted. Theresa May’s position in her own country is so weak that she had to tag along with the charade at Chequers; and although some of the photos of the Queen with Trump says it all, she is in a position that precludes exposure of anything, even the obvious.

Canada’s Justin Trudeau has come close a few times, but his nation probably stands to lose more than anyone from a retaliatory Trump. In Australia, Julie Bishop left her principles on the altar of leadership ambitions a long time ago, uttering only that “Trump does things differently”. Malcolm Turnbull famously stood up to Trump in ‘that phone call’, but is never going to rebuke the leader of ‘our closest ally’ publicly.

Despite having managed to trash the reputation of his country in less than two years, relinquishing the moral right to be the leader of the free world, Trump remains a powerful man. I can understand that Trudeau and Turnbull and many other leaders are afraid to stand up to him, too much to lose. China’s Xi has taken up the mantle that the POTUS has lost, not needing to stand up to anyone unless it serves his interests. India’s Modi has little apparent regard for world affairs. Japan’s Abe and Indonesia’s Widodo equally so; and no African or South American leaders even have a place at the executive table of world leaders.

That leaves Europe, or more specifically the European Union and M&M – Macron and Merkel.

European leaders have no excuse for not standing up to Trump. Moreover, European leaders – and especially Angela Merkel – cannot ignore the lessons of Hitler’s rise to power. It must remember what Chamberlain didn’t do, with President Albert Lebrun (I know, I had to look it up, too) watching idly from the Elysee Palace.

In the United States, Franklin Roosevelt was shackled by internal problems, turning a blind eye. 

Today, the domestic opposition to Trump is weakened by a tepid Democratic Party still getting over Clinton’s loss. And although there is a growing disquiet even among Republicans, their desire to cling to power outweighs their willingness to see their denuded President.

And that is the problem with Trump: We still live in a world where might is right.

And just like the invisible cloak, it is not.

Kim Wingerei is a former business man, turned blogger and author. His first non-fiction book: “Why Democracy is Broken – A Blueprint for Change’’ is now available @


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5 Responses to KIM WINGEREI. The Naked President.

  1. Hal Duell says:

    Perhaps there is no one standing up to Trump, at least in what we know as “the west”, because after thirty years of unbridled uni-polar power projection and turbo capitalism there is no one left to stand up to him.
    You can start with the execrable Clintons and their coterie of camp followers and continue down through the good (Turnbull and other well-meaning but weak world leaders) to the bad (Merkel, May, Macron with the entire EU and NATO leadership) to the ugly (Netanyahu and his wholly owned menagerie of swamp creatures inhabiting the D.C. Beltway). They are all standing naked now. They have been exposed. They have left themselves with nowhere to hide, try as the MSM presstitutes will to get that veil back up there. And that might be the crowning achievement of the first two years of President Trump, and why his presidency could be considered a good thing.
    What the next two years will bring is anyone’s guess, but hopefully the west can begin its long healing journey back to the magic of enlightened, egalitarian opportunity. We are touching bottom, and there really is nowhere else to go, that is if we are to survive at all.

    • Kim Wingerei says:

      Cheers Hal, shortly after Trump was elected I expressed the hope that he will be remembered by history not for anything he did – good or bad – but for being a wake up call to how far our world has descended. I retain that hope.

  2. Kim, I think Trump’s foreign policy instincts from the outset of his campaign have been correct. Engage with Russia and disengage from blowing the Middle East to bits.

    The central strategy should be to keep some distance between Russia and China in Eurasia. Trump’s advice to European countries to look to their own defences is wisely spoken. The same comment applies to us in Australia.

    I have just read Paul Monk’s review in The Rationalist magazine of books by Bruno Macaes and Barry Cunliffe on Eurasia and the Belt and Road Initiative. The books are on my reading list.

    The parallels with Hitler are obnoxious. Trump is a moderating influence on the American war machine and Russia poses no threat to world peace.

    Trump as a person may not be the model of a gentleman and scholar but most politicians worldwide are cynical seekers of power and he is to be preferred to his austere, bible-bashing deputy.

    Trump won office because the Democrats decades ago sold their souls to Wall Street.

    • Kim Wingerei says:

      Thanks Jerry, appreciate your perspective – I am still not convinced that there is much thought at all behind Trump’s “strategy” – but in a way I hope you are right…

  3. Andrew Glikson says:

    While I am very, very, very far from being a Trump supporter, in my view the only substitute to peace talks between the US and Russia would be a suicidal global nuclear war.
    The bulk of the mainstream media and many among the political classes do not appear too interested in peace talks.

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